I hate sending an email only to receive the dreaded auto-response.
I get why people use them. I’ve even used one a time or two myself. I’m not saying there’s not a time when they make sense. Still, I don’t like them. Never have. Never will.
I thought that changed recently when I received one that made me CI. (That’s “chuckle inside,” as I’m much too insecure to LOL.)
Not only did I not hate this response. It almost changed my life.
“Email’s great. And sucks. I’m experimenting with ignoring it for days.”
Talk about an honest auto-response. I liked it so much that I wondered whether it might work as my life’s pattern. My modus operandi.
So I began an experiment.
When someone on my staff texted me with a question, I had a ready response: “Staff’s great. And sucks. I’m experimenting with ignoring you for days.”
Children? Yep. Works with them too. They’re great. But…and please don’t tell me I’m the only parent who has ever felt this way…they sometimes suck, which makes ignoring them a plausible strategy, especially if I want to avoid being pulled into the drama vortex.
While I’ve not tried it on my spouse, I think she’s tested it on me, as I’ve heard her say something to that effect from time to time. “Husbands are great. And suck.” (I know. It’s shocking to me too.)
Alas, all good things come to an end. I closed my experiment unchanged, which means that my life didn’t get one bit better by ignoring all the things and people who both make my life great…and also suck.
I guess I’m finding that it’s not easy for me to ignore things.
I’m more the “ponder things endlessly in my heart” kind of person.
The result is sometimes the same. People think I’m ignoring their email…or them…when it’s actually quite the opposite.
When something has meaning to me, like an honest question or a helpful critique, or even a relationship that may be strained, I sometimes make the mistake of waiting for the right words to appear so that I can craft the perfect response. And the longer I search, the longer their wait becomes, which makes the ache even more painful, once more heightening the need for the perfect words.
Maybe there are others out there like me. Folks who aren’t ignoring, but pondering. And though it has the same result on the ones waiting for my response, I’m hopeful they might understand that I am slow to respond not because they don’t matter, but because they do.